portland independent media center  
images audio video
newswire article reposts global

alternative media | government | political theory

Peking needs IMC

Chinese authorities closed 12,575 net cafes in the closing months of 2004. Chinese net cafes operate under a set of strict guidelines and many of those most recently closed broke rules that limit how close they can be to schools. The move is the latest in a series of steps the government has taken to crack down on "immoral net use". Net cafes are hugely popular in China because the relatively high cost of computer hardware means that few people have PCs in their homes. All the 100,000 or so net cafes in the country are required to use software that controls what websites users can see. Logs of sites people visit are also kept. (from BBC report.)
The methods of the Peking rulers of the Chinese "Animal Farm" (referring to Orwell's modern fable) are chillingly similar to the methods used by the ruling regime here in the U.S. Consider:

"Laws on net cafe opening hours and who can use them were introduced in 2002 following a fire at one cafe that killed 25 people . . . During the crackdown following the blaze authorities moved to clean up net cafes and demanded that all of them get permits to operate . . . In August 2004 Chinese authorities shut down 700 websites and arrested 224 people in a crackdown on net porn . . . At the same time it introduced new controls to block overseas sex sites . . . The Reporters Without Borders group said in a report that Chinese government technologies for e-mail interception and net censorship are among the most highly developed in the world." (from BBC report.)

So there it is. First, the Reichstag fire, then requiring permits, then the crackdown in the name of "morality" and to protect your children. And, of course, security means that the authorities have to be in possession of all the latest hi-tech "tools."

 http://news.bbc.co.uk/go/em/-/1/hi/technology/4263525.stm

add a comment on this article

names 16.Feb.2005 11:50

Jason

That is Beijing